close up of the top of beer bottles

Professional Brewing Programs Launches the Business of Craft Beer

UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education has launched a new subject area, the Business of Craft Beer, designed to address the growing needs of brewers looking to successfully start and operate a brewery.

With more than 7,200 breweries in the United States, the craft beer industry has become increasingly competitive. “Crafting and brewing great beers is a basic requirement in today’s craft beer industry,” said Pat Greer, a brewing industry veteran and an instructor in UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education’s Brewing Program. “However, starting-up and operating a brewery requires a completely different set of skills and knowledge to be successful—this is what the Business of Craft Beer is all about.” With courses in Marketing Craft Beer and Brewery Safety, the Business of Craft Beer provides brewers with focused, practical instruction and training that they can readily apply on key topics beyond brewing science.

“Brewers need to be able to answer the question: What does it cost to make great beer?” said Greer. Knowledge of finance, taxation and compliance are not usually in the wheelhouse of a brewer. Support activities, such as identifying overhead costs, marketing, distribution and inventory, are crucial to running a successful brewery.

Utilizing both interactive lectures with guest speakers and a workshop format with group sessions, courses allow students to engage in discussions and participate in hands-on learning. Courses also incorporate insight and experiences from industry experts to help students succeed and avoid some of the pitfalls others have encountered.

The Business of Craft Beer courses complement UC Davis’ suite of technical brewing courses by addressing the evolving needs of the craft beer industry. “We are working closely with craft brewers and studying industry trends and developments as we look at designing future courses,” said Greer, who mentioned brewery management and distribution as potential future topics. “What makes these courses unique is the opportunity for brewers to work with talented instructors and be part of UC Davis' legacy in the craft brewing industry.”

Courses start soon. Visit the web to learn more or to enroll. 

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